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884 terms

GRE Wordlist, Barron's, m-p

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macabre
gruesome; grisly; ghastly; CF. of death
mace
ceremonial staff used as a symbol of authority; clublike medieval weapon
macerate
soften by soaking in liquid; waste away; Ex. macerate powdered wood to make paper
Machiavellian
crafty; double-dealing; of the political doctrine of Machiavelli, which holds that craft and deceit are justified in pursuing political power
machinations
evil schemes or plots; schemes or plots to achieve an evil end; V. machinate
maculated
spotted; stained; CF. immaculate
madrigal
pastoral song; song for several singers without instruments
maelstrom
violent whirlpool; violent or tublent situation; CF. stream
magisterial
authoritative; imperious; commanding; of a magistrate; Ex. magisterial study of Roman law; Ex. magisterial manner
magistrate
official with power to administer the law
magnanimity
generosity; ADJ. magnanimous: generous
magnate
person of prominence or influence; powerful or influential person (in business or industry); Ex. oil magnate
magniloquent
boastful; pompous
magnitude
greatness (in size or extent); extent
maim
mutilate; injure lastingly; disable; cripple; Ex. maimed for life
makeshift
temporary expedient or substitute (in the case of urgent need); Ex. makeshift shelter
maladroit
clumsy; not skillful; awkward; bungling
malady
illness
malaise
uneasiness; vague feeling of ill health (without any particular pain or appearance of disease)
malapropism
comic misuse of a word; CF. Mrs. Malaprop
malapropos
inappropriate; ADV.
malcontent
person dissatisfied with existing state of affairs; discontented person; ADJ: discontented
malediction
curse
malefactor
evildoer; criminal
maleficient
doing evil; N. maleficience
malevolent
wishing evil; exhibiting ill will; N. malevolence
malfeasance
wrongdoing; misconduct (by a public official)
malicious
hateful; spiteful; expressing malice; N. malice: desire to harm others; spite
malign
speak evil of; bad-mouth(criticize spitefully); defame; ADJ: harmful; Ex. malign influence
malignant
tending to cause death; highly injurious; aggressively malevolent; Ex. malignant tumor
malingerer
one who feigns illness to escape duty; V. malinger: feign illness to avoid work
malleable
(of a metal) capable of being shaped by pounding(beating); pliable; (of someone) impressionable(easily influenced); easily controlled; tractable
malodorous
foul-smelling
mammal
vertebrate animal whose female suckles its young
mammoth
gigantic; enormous
manacle
restrain; handcuff; N.
mandate
order; charge; authoritative command; power to govern another country; power to given to a government; region under administration; V: give a mandate to; place under a mandate; Ex. mandated territory
mandatory
obligatory; compulsory; of a mandate
maneuver(manoeuver)
strategic military or naval movement (done for training purposes); carefully planned process; stratagem; V: carry out a military maneuver; use maneuvers in gaining an end
mange
skin disease (esp. of domestic animals) marked by loss of hair
mangle
tear or cut to pieces; mutilate or disfigure; Ex. badly mangled bodies
mangy
shabby; wretched; suffering from mange; of bad appearance
maniacal
raging mad; insane; N. maniac: insane person; CF. mania: disorder of the mind; intense enthusiasm
manifest
evident; visible; obvious; V: show plainly
manifestation
outward demonstration; manifesting; indication of the presence of something; Ex. manifestation of his pronounced musical bent
manifesto
public declaration of principles; statement of policy
manifold
many in number or kind; numerous; varied
manipulate
operate with one's hands; control or play upon (people, forces, etc.) artfully; maneuver; Ex. how to manipulate publicity and men; ADJ. manipulative
mannered
affected; not natural; Ex. mannered way of speech
mannerism
distinctive behavioral trait; affected style in art (according to a set of styles)
mantle
loose sleeveless outer garment; cloak; something that covers or envelops; the layer of the earth between the crust and the core
manumit
emancipate; free from slavery or bondage
mar
spoil the appearance of
maraud
move in search of plunder; Ex. marauding army
margin
border; room; allowance beyond what is needed; Ex. margin of safety
marginal
of a margin; barely within a limit; Ex. marginal effect/writing ability
marital
pertaining to marriage
maritime
bordering on(adjacent to) the sea; nautical; of the ships or the sea; Ex. Maritime Provinces
marked
noticeable; targeted for vengeance or attack; Ex. marked improvement/man
maroon
leave helpless on a deserted island or coast; ADJ. red brown
marred
damaged; disfigured; V. mar: spoil; disfigure
marrow
soft fatty tissue that fills most bone cavities and is the source of blood cells
marshal
put in order; guide ceremoniously to the correct place; Ex. marshal the children into the museum; N: military officer; official
marsupial
one of a family of mammals that nurse their offspring in a pouch(pocket of skin or leather); CF. kangaroo, opossum, wombat
martial
warlike; of war; Ex. martial art/law
martinet
strict disciplinarian; person who demands total obedience to rules and orders; CF. Jean Martinet
martyr
one who voluntarily suffers death for his or her religion or cause; great sufferer; Ex. martyr to his rheumatism
mash
crush into mash; convert into mash; N: mixture of ground grain and nutrients fed to livestock and fowl
masochist
person who enjoys his own pain; CF. masochism
mason
one who builds or works with stone or brick; N. masonry: work of a mason; stonework or brickwork
masquerade
wear a mask or disguise; pretend; N: costume party or ball at which masks are worn; pretense; disguise
mass
Christian religious ceremony; CF. Mass: ceremony of the Eucharist
masticate
chew
mat
not shiny; matte; having a dull finish; N: flat piece of material used as a floor covering; V.
materialism
preoccupation with physical comforts and things; excessive regard for worldly concerns (rather than spiritual matters)
maternal
motherly; N. maternity: motherhood
matin\'ee(matinee)
dramatic or musical performance given in the afternoon
matriarch
woman who rules a family or larger social group
matriculate
enroll (in college or graduate school); CF. matrix
matrimony
state of being married
matrix
point of origin; array of numbers or algebraic symbols; mold or die; Ex. the matrix of Western civilization
maudlin
effusively sentimental
maul
handle roughly; batter; injure by beating; Ex. mauled by his overexcited fans; N: heavy long-handled hammer
mausoleum
monumental tomb; large stately tomb; CF. Mausolos
mauve
pale purple
maverick
rebel; nonconformist (in a group)
mawkish
mushy(sentimental) and gushy; icky-sticky sentimental; excessively and objectionably sentimental
maxim
proverb; truth pithily stated
mayhem
injury to body; crime of willfully maiming or crippling a person; violent disorder; Ex. mayhem in the zoo; CF. maim
meager
scanty; inadequate
mealymouthed
indirect in speech (when something unpleasant must be said); hypocritical; evasive
meander
wind or turn in its course; follow a winding or turning course; move aimlessly and idly
meddlesome
interfering; V. meddle: interfere
mediate
settle a dispute through the services of an outsider; act as an intermediary; produce by mediating; Ex. mediate a cease-fire
mediocre
ordinary; commonplace; neither good nor bad
meditation
reflection; thought; V. meditate
medium
element that is a creature's natural environment; nutrient setting in which microorganisms are cultivated; appropriate occupation or means of expression; channel of communication; compromise; middle position between extremes; intervening substan
medley
mixture
meek
submissive; patient and long-suffering
megalomania
mania for doing grandiose things; mental disorder characterized by delusions of wealth, power, or importance
melancholy
gloomy; morose; blue; N. ADJ. melancholic; CF. melancholia
melee
fight
mellifluous
(of words or a voice) sweetly or smoothly flowing; melodious; having a pleasant tune
memento
token; reminder of the past; keepsake; Ex. memento of your visit
memoir
memoirs; autobiography; biography
memorial
something, such as a monument or holiday, intended to honor the memory of a person or event; ADJ: commemorative
memorialize
commemorate
menace
threat; V: threaten
menagerie
collection of wild animals on exhibition; zoo
mendacious
lying; habitually dishonest; N. mendacity
mendicant
beggar; ADJ: living as a beggar
menial
suitable for servants; lowly; mean; N: someone who does menial work (esp. servant in a house)
mentor
counselor; teacher
mercantile
concerning trade or merchants
mercenary
motivated solely by money or gain; N.
mercurial
capricious; quick and changing; fickle; containing the element mercury; Ex. mercurial temper; CF. mood
meretricious
flashy; tawdry; attractive on the surface but of no real value; Ex. metericious argument/jewel; CF. prostitute
merger
combination (of two business corporations); act of merging
merit
deserve; ADJ. meritorious: deserving reward or praise
mesmerize
hypnotize; N. mesmerism; CF. Franz Mesmer
metallurgical
pertaining to the art of removing metals from ores; N. metallurgy: science that deals with extracting metals from ores
metamorphosis
change of form; Ex. metamorphosis of caterpillar to butterfly; V. metamorphose: change by metamorphosis
metaphor
implied comparison; CF. simile
metaphysical
pertaining to speculative philosophy; of metaphysics; N. metaphysics: branch of philosophy that examines the nature of reality
mete
measure; distribute; administer; Ex. mete out justice/punishment
meteoric
like a meteor; swift; momentarily brilliant; Ex. meteoric rise to fame; N. meteor
meter
arrangement of words in the form of poetry (by accentual rhythm)
methodical
systematic; N. method: systematic method of procedure
meticulous
excessively careful (with great attention to detail); painstaking; scrupulous
metrical
metric; written in the form of poetry; Ex. metrical translation of Homer
metropolis
large city
mettle
courage (to continue bravely in spite of difficulties); spirit; ADJ. mettlesome
miasma
swamp gas; heavy vaporous atmosphere often emanating from decaying matter; pervasive corrupting influence; noxious atmosphere or influence
microcosm
small representative world; world in miniature; Ex. microcosm of English society
migrant
changing its habitat; wandering; Ex. migrant birds/workers; N: one that migrates
migratory
wandering; V. migrate: move from one region and settle in another; move periodically from one region to another
milieu
social environment; means of expression; Ex. feel out of one's milieu; Ex. His proper milieu is watercolor.
militant
combative; bellicose; N.
militate
work against; Ex. militate against the chances of promotion; CF. serve as a soldier
militia
army composed of ordinary citizens rather than professional soldiers
millennium
thousand-year period (as in the New Testament); hoped-for period of happiness and prosperity
mime
pantomime(act without dialogue); mimicry; mimer; V: mimic; pantomime
mimicry
imitation
minatory
menacing; threatening
mincing
affectedly dainty(delicate); V. mince: cut (esp. meat) into very small pieces; walk with exaggerated primness; walk in an unnatural way, taking little short steps; Ex. The actor minced across the stage; CF. mincemeat; CF. mincer
mingle
mix together in close association
miniature
small model; small painting; ADJ: small
minion
servile dependent; obsequious follower
minuscule(miniscule)
extremely small
minute
extremely small; CF. minutes: official record of the proceedings at a meeting
minutiae
petty or trivial details; CF. minutia
mirage
unreal reflection; optical illusion
mire
entangle; stick in swampy ground; stick or sink in mire; N: bog; deep mud; Ex. sucked deeper into the mire
mirth
merriment; laughter
misadventure
mischance; ill luck; Ex. death by misadventure
misanthrope
one who hates mankind; misanthropist
misapprehension
error; misunderstanding; V. misapprehend
miscellaneous
made up of a variety of parts
miscellany
mixture of writings on various subjects; collection of various items
mischance
ill luck
mischief
behavior (of children) causing trouble with no serious harm; damage; harm; Ex. mischief to the crops; ADJ. mischievous: causing mischief; playfully troublesome
misconduct
immoral behavior; bad management; V.
misconstrue
interpret incorrectly; misinterpret; misjudge
miscreant
wretch; wrongdoer; villain; Ex. kindness to the miscreant; CF. believe
misdemeanor
minor crime; misdeed; wrongdoing
miserly
stingy; mean
misgivings
doubts
mishap
unfortunate accident
misnomer
wrong or improper name; incorrect designation
misogamy
hatred of marriage
misogynist
hater of woman; CF. misogyny
missile
object to be thrown or projected
missive
letter; written statement; CF. sent
mite
very small object or insect-like creature; small coin
mitigate
appease; moderate; make or become less in force or intensity
mnemonic
pertaining to memory; assisting the memory; N: device, such as as formula or rhyme, used as a mnemonic aid
mobile
movable; not fixed; N. mobility
mock
ridicule; deride; imitate often in derision
mode
prevailing style; current fashion; manner; way of doing something; Ex. in the latest mode; Ex. simple mode of life
modicum
limited quantity; small amount; Ex. He does not have a modicum of sense; CF. moderate
modish
fashionable; conforming to the current fashion
modulate
tone down in intensity; change the intensity or tone of; regulate; change from one musical key to another; Ex. modulate from E to G
mogul
powerful person; Ex. oil moguls; CF. Mogol, Moghul; CF. Mongolian
molecule
the smallest particle (one or more atoms) of a substance that has all the properties of that substance
mollify
soothe an angry person
mollycoddle
pamper; coddle; baby; indulge excessively
molt(moult)
periodically shed or cast off hairs or feathers (for replacement by a new growth)
molten
melted; Ex. molten lava
momentous
very important; N. moment; CF. momentary
momentum
quantity of motion of a moving body; impetus; moving force
monarchy
government under a single ruler
monastic
related to monks or monasteries; removed from worldly concerns
monetary
pertaining to money
mongrel
plant or animal (esp. a dog) of mixed breed; ADJ.
monochromatic
having only one color
monochrome
painting in only one color; ADJ.
monogram
design composed of one or more initials of a name; V.
monograph
scholarly article
monolithic
solidly uniform; unchangeable; unyielding; N. monolith: large block of stone
monotheism
belief in one God
monotony
sameness leading to boredom; monotonousness; ADJ. monotonous; CF. monotone
monumental
massive; impressively large; built as a monument
moodiness
fits of depression or gloom; ADJ. moody: given to changeable moods; subject to periods of depression; gloomy CF. mood: | state of mind or emotion
moratorium
legal delay of payment or action; Ex. declare moratorium on the building of new houses
morbid
given to unwholesome or unhealthy thought; moody; characteristic of disease; Ex. morbid curiosity; N. morbidity; CF. disease
mordant
biting; sarcastic; stinging; (apprec.) incisive; cutting; Ex. mordant pen/wit
mores
conventions; moral standards; moral customs
morgue
mortuary; place where bodies are kept before burial or cremation
moribund
dying; at the point of death; CF. death
morose
ill-humored; sullen; sullenly melancholy
mortar
vessel in which substances are crushed with a pestle
mortician
undertaker; CF. death
mortify
humiliate by embarassing excessively; shame; punish the flesh; discipline (one's body) by self-denial; Ex. mortified by her blunder; Ex. mortify the flesh; CF. cause to die
mosaic
picture made of small colorful inlaid tiles; ADJ.
mote
small speck (esp. of dust)
motif
theme; recurrent thematic element in a musical or literary work; single or repeated pattern; figure
motility
ability to move spontaneously; ADJ. motile: moving spontaneously
motley
multi-colored (as of a garment worn by a jester); mixed; heterogeneous; CF. jester: one who jests (as a paid fool at medieval courts)
mottled
blotched in coloring; spotted; Ex. mottled face; V. mottle: mark with blotches of different colors
motto
brief statement used to express a principle
mountebank
charlatan; boastful pretender
muddle
confuse; mix up confusedly; N: state of confusion
muggy
(of weather) warm and damp
mulct
defraud a person of something; swindle; Ex. mulct the boy of his legacy
multifarious
varied; greatly diversified; Ex. multifarious activities
multiform
having many forms
multilingual
having many languages; fluent in several languages
multiplicity
state of being numerous or multiple; large number; Ex. multiplicity of details; ADJ. multiple: of more than one element
mundane
worldly as opposed to spiritual; everyday; of the ordinary; Ex. mundane existence; CF. world
munificent
very generous in giving; Ex. munificent benefactor; N. munificience
mural
wall painting
murky
dark and gloomy; thick with fog; vague; Ex. murky night/fog; N. murk: partial or complete darkness; gloom
murmur
low, indistinct, continuous sound; V. CF. mumble
muse
ponder at length; N: source of inspiration (esp. of a poet)
musky
having the odor of musk; N. musk: odorous substance secreted by an Asian deer
muster
gather; assemble (troops); Ex. muster up one's strength for the ordeal; N.
musty
stale (in odor or taste); spoiled by age; CF. moist
mutablility
ability to change in form; fickleness; ADJ. mutable: able to change; fickle; CF. mutate; CF. mutant
mute
silent; without speech; not pronounced; unable to speak; N: one who is incapable of speech; V: soften the sound, color, shade of
muted
silent; muffled; toned down; Ex. muted traffic noise
mutilate
maim; injure lastingly; deprive of a limb or an essential part
mutinous
unruly; rebellious; Ex. mutinous teenagers; N. mutiny: open rebellion; CF. mutineer
mutter
utter (complaining words) indistinctly in low tones
myopic
nearsighted; lacking foresight; N. myopia
myriad
very large number; ADJ. CF. ten thousand
mystic
of hidden meaning and spiritual power; Ex. mystic ceremonies; N. CF. mysticism
nadir
lowest point; point on the celestial sphere diametrically opposite the zenith
naivet\'e(naivety)
quality of being unsophisticated; simplicity; artlessness; gullibility; ADJ. naive(na\"ive): ingenuous; lacking worldliness; simple; credulous
narcissist
conceited person; N. narcissism; CF. narcissus
narrative
related to telling a story; N: narrated account; story; V. narrate: tell (a story); CF. narration
nascent
incipient; coming into being or existence; Ex. nascent ability in music
natal
connected with birth; CF. prenatal; CF. postnatal
natation
swimming
natty
neatly or smartly dressed; dapper; smart; Ex. natty dresser
nausea
feeling of sickness and desire to vomit; disgust; CF. seasickness
nauseate
cause to become sick; fill with disgust; fill nausea
nauseous
causing nausea; feeling nausea
nautical
pertaining to ships or navigation
navigable
(of a body of water) wide and deep enough to allow ships to pass through; (of a ship or aircraft) able to be steered
nebula
diffuse mass of interstellar dust or gas; galaxy
nebulous
vague; hazy; cloudy; of a nebula; Ex. nebulous proposal
necromancy
black magic; sorcery; dealings with the dead; art that professes to communicate with the spirits of the dead so as to predict the future; CF. necromancer; CF. necro+divination; CF. necro-: death; Ex. necropolis
nectar
drink of the gods; sweet liquid collected by bees
nefarious
very wicked
negate
cancel out; nullify; cause to have no effect; deny; N. negation
negligence
neglect; failure to take reasonable care; ADJ. negligent: neglectful; lax; not taking enough care
negligible
so small, trifling, or unimportant as to be easily disregarded
nemesis
someone seeking revenge; source of downfall or ruin; CF. Nemesis
neologism
new or newly coined word or phrase
neophyte
recent convert; new member of a religious group; beginner; CF. plant
nepotism
favoritism (to a relative); CF. nephew
nether
lower; Ex. nether garments/regions
nettle
irritate; annoy; vex; ADJ. nettlesome
nexus
connection
nib
beak(bill); pen point
nicety
precision; accuracy; minute distinction or difference; Ex. to a nicety: exactly; precisely; Ex. distinguish between niceties
niggardly
meanly stingy; parsimonious; N. niggard: stingy person
niggle
spend too much time on minor points (esp. when finding fault); find fault; Ex. niggle over details; ADJ. niggling
nihilist
one who considers traditional beliefs to be groundless and existence meaningless; absolute skeptic; revolutionary terrorist; CF. nihilism: belief that nothing has meaning or value; belief that destruction of existing political or social institutio
nimble
quick in movement; agile; quick in understanding; Ex. nimble climber/mind
nip
snip off; stop something's growth or development; bite; make numb with cold; Ex. nip the plan; Ex. A guard dog nipped the postman; Ex. fingers nipped by the extreme chill
nirvana
in Buddhist teachings, the ideal state in which the individual loses himself in the attainment of an impersonal beatitude
nocturnal
done or active at night; Ex. nocturnal animals/raids; CF. nocturne
noisome
foul smelling; very unpleasant; unwholesome
nomadic
wandering; N. nomad: tribe who migrates from place to place
nomenclature
terminology(system of specialized words); system of names or naming things
nominal
in name only; of a name; trifling; (of a sum of money) very small; CF. nominate: propose as a candidate; appoint
nonchalance
indifference; lack of concern; composure; ADJ. nonchalant: unconcerned; cool; indifferent; Ex. nonchalant attitude to his debts
noncommittal
neutral; refusing commitment to a particular opinion; unpledged; undecided
nondescript
undistinctive; ordinary; ordinary-looking; Ex. nondescript fellow in a crowd
nonentity
person of no importance; nonexistence
nonplus
put at a loss; bring to a halt by confusion; perplex; CF. no more
nonsense
speech or writing with no meaning; foolish behavior or language; Ex. make (a) nonsense of: spoil; cause to fail
noose
loop formed in a rope
nostalgia
homesickness; longing for the past; Ex. nostalgia for the clothes of 1920s; ADJ. nostalgic
nostrum
questionable medicine; quack medicine; CF. our (remedy)
notable
conspicuous; worthy of note; remarkable; important; distinguished; noted
notch
V-shaped cut in a surface; V.
notoriety
disrepute; ill fame
nourish
provide with food necessary for life and growth
nourishment
something that nourishes; food
nova
star that suddenly becomes much brighter and then returns to its original brightness
novelty
something new; newness; ADJ. novel: new; original
novice
beginner
noxious
harmful; CF. obnoxious
nuance
shade of slight difference in meaning or color; subtle distinction
nubile
marriageable; of marriageable age; CF. connubial
nugatory
worthless; futile
nullify
make invalid; make null; invalidate
numismatist
person who collects coins; N. numismatics: study or collection of money, coins, and medals
nuptial
related to marriage or the wedding ceremony; N. nuptials: wedding ceremony
nurse
suckle; take care of (as a nurse); bear in mind; Ex. nursing mother; Ex. nurse a hope/grudge against someone
nurture
nourish; feed; educate; rear; care for while it is growing or developing; foster; cultivate; N: something that nourishes; rearing
nutrient
nourishing substance; ADJ: providing nourishment
nutrition
process of nourishing or being nourished; CF. malnutrition
nutritious
providing nourishment
oaf
stupid awkward person; CF. elf
oath
solemn promise; blasphemous use of sacred words to express strong feelings; swear-word; Ex. ``For Christ's sake''
oatmeal
crushed oats used for making porridge
obdurate
stubborn; refusing to change one's belief
obeisance
bow (to show respect and obedience)
obelisk
tall column tapering(becoming gradually narrower toward the end) and ending in a pyramid
obese
excessively fat; N. obesity
obfuscate
confuse; muddle; cause confusion; make needlessly complex; make so confused as to be difficult to understand
obituary
death notice (esp. in a newspaper); ADJ.
objective
not influenced by emotions; fair; N: goal; aim
obligatory
binding; required; compulsory; V. oblige: constrain; make grateful; do a favor; accommodate
oblique
indirect; slanting (deviating from the perpendicular or from a straight line); Ex. oblique reference
obliterate
destroy completely; wipe out; Ex. obliterate the village
oblivion
obscurity; condition of being completely forgotten; forgetfulness
oblivious
inattentive or unmindful; unaware; wholly absorbed; forgetful(having the habit of forgetting)
obloquy
slander; disgrace; infamy
obnoxious
offensive; disagreeable; Ex. obnoxious smell
obscure
dark; vague; unclear; not well known; Ex. obscure meaning/village; V: darken; cover; make unclear; Ex. obscure the moon/meaning
obsequious
slavishly attentive; servile; full of servile compliance; sycophantic
obsequy
funeral ceremony
obsessive
related to thinking about something constantly; of an obsession; preoccupying; N. obsession: compulsive preoccupation with a fixed idea; compulsive idea; V. obsess: preoccupy the mind of excessively
obsidian
black volcanic rock
obsolete
outmoded; no longer used
obstetrician
physician specializing in delivery(assisting in giving birth) of babies; N. obstetrics; CF. midwife
obstinate
stubborn; hard to control or treat; Ex. obstinate cough; N. obstinacy
obstreperous
boisterous; noisy and uncontrollable
obtrude
push (oneself or one's ideas) forward or intrude; impose (oneself or one's ideas) on others; butt in; stick out or extrude; thrust out; Ex. obtrude A on B; ADJ. obtrusive; N. obtrusion; CF. unobtrusive
obtuse
blunt; not sharp; stupid; slow in understanding
obviate
make unnecessary; get rid of; Ex. obviate the need
Occident
the West
occlude
shut; close; obstruct; Ex. A blood clot occluded an artery.
occult
mysterious; secret; supernatural; beyond human comprehension; CF. mysterious to human ?; OP. bare
oculist
physician who specializes in treatment of the eyes
odds
chances; probability; disagreement; Ex. The odds are that it will rain. Ex. at odds with
odious
arousing strong dislike; hateful(causing hatred); vile
odium
detestation; quality of being odious; hatefulness; disrepute (resulting from hateful conduct)
odoriferous
giving off an odor
odorous
having an odor
odyssey
long, eventful, adventurous journey
offensive
attacking; insulting; distasteful; V. offend: violate; hurt the feelings of; N. offense: offending; violating of a moral or social code; crime; attack; Ex. first offense
offhand
casual; done without prior thought or preparation
officious
meddlesome; excessively pushy in offering one's services; overly eager in offering unwanted services or advices; Ex. officious bellboy
ogle
look at amorously; make eyes at; Ex. old men ogling young girls
olfactory
concerning the sense of smell
oligarchy
government by a privileged few
ominous
threatening; of an evil omen
omnipotent
all-powerful; having unlimited power
omnipresent
universally present; ubiquitous
omniscient
all-knowing
omnivorous
eating both plant and animal food; devouring everything
onerous
burdensome
onomatopoeia
words formed in imitation of natural sounds
onslaught
vicious assault; fierce attack; Ex. unexpected onslaught of the enemy
onus
burden; responsibility
ooze
(of a thick liquid) pass or flow slowly; N: mud or thick liquid as at the bottom of a river
opalescent
iridescent; lustrous; like an opal; N. opalescence
opaque
dark; not transparent; N. opacity
opiate
medicine to induce sleep or deaden pain; something that relieves emotions or causes inaction; sleep-producing drug containing opium
opportune
timely; well-chosen
opportunist
individual who sacrifices principles for expediency by taking advantage of circumstances; N. opportunism
opprobrium
infamy; disgrace arising from shameful conduct; vilification(slander); scorn; contempt; Ex. opprobrium hurled against him; ADJ. opprobrious: expressing contempt; shameful or infamous
optician
maker and seller of eyeglasses
optimist
person who looks on the bright side; N. optimism
optimum
most favorable; optimal; N: most favorable condition
optional
not compulsory; left to one's choice; N. option: act of choosing; choice; freedom or power to choose; something available as a choice; Ex. have no option; Ex. two options
optometrist
one who fits glasses to remedy visual defects
opulence
extreme wealth; luxuriousness; abundance; ADJ. opulent: possessing great wealth; abundant
opus
work (esp. musical composition); Ex. magnum opus: masterpiece; CF. opera
oracular
of an oracle; prophetic; uttered as if with divine authority; mysterious or ambiguous; hard to understand; N. oracle: wiser person; prophecy made by an oracle
orator
public speaker
oratorio
dramatic poem set to music; long musical work with singing but without acting; CF. cantata
ordain
decree or command; grant holy orders; predestine; install as a minister, priest, or rabbi; N. ordainment; CF. ordination
ordeal
severe trial or affliction; difficult experience; trial(test of patience or endurance); affliction
ordinance
decree; authoritative order
ordination
ceremony conferring holy orders; ceremony of ordaining a priest
orgy
wild drunken revelry; unrestrained indulgence in an activity; Ex. orgy of shopping
orient
get one's bearings; adjust; make familiar with a situation; orientate
orientation
act of finding oneself in society; orienting
orifice
mouthlike opening; small opening (esp. to a cavern or passage of the body); CF. mouth
ornate
excessively or elaborately decorated
ornithologist
scientific student of birds; N. ornithology: scientific study of birds
orthodox
traditional; (of someone) conservative in belief; adhering to an established doctrine
orthography
correct spelling; CF. ortho-: straight; correct; Ex. orthodontics
oscillate
vibrate pendulumlike; waver
osseous
made of bone; bony
ossify
change or harden into bone; become hard and unchanging in one's ideas
ostensible
apparent; appearing as such; professed(pretended); pretended; Ex. ostensible purpose of the expedition
ostentatious
showy; trying to attract attention; pretentious; N. ostentation: showy display
ostracize
banish from a group; exclude from public favor; ban; Ex. His friends ostracized him. N. ostracism
oust
expel; drive out; force out; N. ouster: ousting
outcast
one that has been excluded from a society; ADJ.
outfit
clothing or equipment for a special purpose; Ex. cowboy outfit
outgoing
sociable; eager to mix socially with others
outlandish
bizzare; peculiar; unconventional
outlaw
fugitive from the law (excluded from legal protection); V: declare (someone) to be an outlaw; deprive of the protection of the law; declare illegal; Ex. Drinking has been outlawed.
outlook
point of view; view from a particular place; expectation for the future; prospect; Ex. outlook on life; Ex. pleasing outlook; Ex. weather outlook
outmoded
no longer in fashion or use; no longer stylish; old-fashioned
outrage
act of extreme violence or viciousness; resentful anger; V: commit an outrage on; produce anger in; ADJ. outrageous: offensive
outskirts
fringes; outer borders (as of a city); Ex. outskirts of Boston
outspoken
candid; blunt
outstrip
outrun; surpass; outdo
outwit
outsmart; defeat by behaving more cleverly
ovation
enthusiastic applause
overbearing
bossy; domineering and arrogant; decisively important; Ex. overbearing manner/importance; V. overbear: dominate
overblown
inflated; exaggerated
oversee
watch over and direct; supervise; N. oversight: unintentional failure to notice or do something; supervision
overt
open to view; public; not secret; CF. covert
overthrow
topple; N.
overture
musical introduction to a long musical piece; first offer or proposal (to begin talks in the hope of reaching an agreement); Ex. overtures for peace
overturn
turn over; capsize; topple
overweening
arrogant; presumptuous
overwhelm
(of water) cover completely; defeat completely by much greater force; Ex. overwhelmed by grief
overwrought
nervous or excited; extremely agitated; hysterical; wrought-up; CF. wrought: made or done
ovoid
egg-shaped; CF. ovum; CF. ovulate
pachyderm
thick-skinned animal
pacifist
one opposed to force; antimilitarist; ADJ. N. pacifism: opposition to war as a means of resolving disputes
pacify
soothe; make calm or quiet; subdue; bring peace to
padre
chaplain (in the armed forces)
paean
song of praise or joy; Ex. paeans celebrating the victory
painstaking
taking pains; showing hard work; taking great care; very careful and through
palatable
agreeable; pleasing to the taste
palate
roof of the mouth; sense of the taste
palatial
of or suitable for a palace; magnificent
paleontology
study of prehistoric life or fossils; CF. paleo-: ancient or prehistoric; Ex. paleography: study of ancient written documents
palette
board on which painter mixes pigments(coloring matters)
palimpsest
parchment or piece of writing material used for second time after original writing has been erased
pall
become boring; grow tiresome
pallet
small poor bed; Ex. straw pallet
palliate
ease pain (without curing); make less severe or offensive (a crime or illness)
pallid
pale; wan; Ex. pallid complexion
palm
conceal in the palm of the hand; palm off: pass off; Ex. palm off some bad oranges onto the lady/the painting as a real Renoir
palpable
tangible; (of something bad) easily perceptible; obvious; Ex. palpable blunder
palpitate
throb; beat rapidly; flutter; tremble; Ex. Her heart began to palpitate.
paltry
insignificant; petty; trifling; contemptible; Ex. paltry sum; CF. trash
pan
criticize harshly
panacea
cure-all; remedy for all diseases
panache
flair; manner of doing things without any difficulty (causing admiration); flamboyance; bunch of feathers (on a helmet); Ex. with great panache;
pandemic
widespread; affecting the majority of people; N: pandemic disease; CF. all people
Pandemonium
wild tumult(commotion); wild noisy disorder; CF. Paradise Lost
pander
cater to (the low desires of others)
panegyric
formal praise; encomium; Ex. I don't deserve such panegyrics.
pang
sudden sharp feeling of pain
panoramic
denoting an unobstructed and comprehensive view; N. panorama: unbroken view of a wide area
pantomime
acting without dialogue; V.
papyrus
ancient paper made from stem of papyrus plant
parable
short simple story teaching a moral
paradigm
model; example that serves as a model; pattern; list of all the inflectional forms of a word
paradox
something apparently contradictory in nature (that may nonetheless be true); statement that looks false but is actually correct
paragon
model of perfection; Ex. paragon of virtue
parallel
similar; analogous; corresponding; N: parallel line; person or thing that is parallel (to another); similarity; Ex. know of no parallel to the case; Ex. without parallel; V: be similar to; make parallel; Ex. Your experience parallels mine; CF. unp
parallelism
state of being parallel; similarity; analogy
parameter
limit; independent variable; Ex. parameters of the problem; Ex. within the parameters of the budget
paramount
foremost in importance; supreme; CF. para-: beyond; above; Ex. paranormal
paramour
illicit lover
paranoia
psychosis marked by delusions of grandeur or persecution; N: ADJ: paranoid, paranoiac
paraphernalia
equipment; odds and ends used in a particular activity; personal belongings; Ex. photographic paraphernalia; CF. married woman's property exclusive of her dowry
paraphrase
restate a passage in one's own words while retaining thought of author; N: restatement of a text in other words
parasite
animal or plant living on another; toady; sycophant; CF. para-: beside
parched
extremely dry; very thirsty; V. parch: make or become extremely dry (by exposure to heat)
parchment
writing material made from the skin of a sheep or goat
pare
cut away the outer covering or skin of (with a knife); trim; Ex. pare apples/expenses
pariah
social outcast; Ex. Mariah the pariah
parish
area in the care of a single priest and served by one main church
parity
equality; close resemblance; CF. disparate
parlance
language; manner of speaking; idiom; Ex. in legal/common parlance
parley
conference (between opponents); CF. speak
parochial
narrow in scope or outlook; provincial; related to parishes
parody
humorous imitation; spoof; takeoff; travesty; V.
paroxysm
fit or attack of pain, laughter, rage; sudden outburst
parquet
floor made of wood strips inlaid in a mosaic like matter; CF. strip: long narrow piece
parry
ward off a blow; deflect; Ex. He parried the unwelcome question very skillfully; N.
parsimony
stinginess; excessive frugality; ADJ. parsimonious
partial
incomplete; favoring one side over another; having a liking for something
partiality
state of being partial; inclination; favorable bias; special fondness; preference
partisan
one-sided; prejudiced; committed to a party (with dislike of any others); N: strong supporter of a party; guerrilla
partition
divide into parts
parvenu
upstart; newly rich person
pass\'e
old-fashioned; past the prime
pass_off
present falsely; represent falsely to be
passive
not active; acted upon; receiving an action without acting in return; accepting without resistance
paste
smooth viscous mixture as of flour(powder made by crushing grain) and water (used as an adhesive); V: cause to adhere by applying paste
pastiche
imitation of another's style in musical composition or in writing; work of art openly imitating the works of other artists
pastoral
rural; of rural life; idyllic; of a pastor
pastry
paste of flour and water (eaten when baked)
patent
obvious; easily seen; open for the public to read; of or protected by a patent; Ex. patent to everyone; N.
pathetic
causing sadness, compassion, pity; touching
pathological
pertaining to disease; N. pathology: study of disease
pathos
tender sorrow; pity; quality in art or literature that produces these feelings; Ex. pathos that runs through the novel
patina
green crust on old bronze works or copper; tone slowly taken by varnished painting
patois
local or provincial dialect
patriarch
father and ruler of a family or tribe
patrician
noble; aristocratic; N: person of high rank; aristocrat; CF. member of the governing classes in ancient Rome; CF. plebian
patrimony
property inherited from a father
patronize
support; act superior toward; treat in a condescending manner; be a customer of; N. patron: one that supports; regular customer; N. patronage; CF. boycott
paucity
scarcity; dearth
pauper
very poor person
peccadillo
slight offense or fault; CF. sin
pecuniary
pertaining to money
pedagogue
teacher; CF. child leader
pedagogy
teaching; art of education
pedant
scholar who overemphasizes book learning, trivial details of learning, or technicalities
pedantic
bookish; showing off learning; marked by an excessive ostentatious concern for book learning; N. pedantry
peddle
travel about selling (wares); CF. foot
pedestal
support or base as for a pillar or statue
pedestrian
ordinary; dull; unimaginative(lacking in imagination); going on foot; Ex. pedestrian prose; N.
pediatrician
physician specializing in children's diseases; N. pediatrics
pedigree
ancestry; lineage
peer
one who has equal standing with another; nobleman; V: look intently; N. peerage; CF. peeress
peerless
having no equal; incomparable
peevish
bad-tempered; irritable; V. peeve: make angry
pejorative
(of a word or phrase) suggesting that someone is of little value; negative in connotation; having a belittling effect; Ex. Many women now considers ``housewife'' a pejorative expression, because it patronized them.
pell-mell
in confusion; disorderly; Ex. dash pell-mell
pellucid
transparent; limpid(crystal clear); clear in meaning; easy to understand
pen
fenced enclosure for animals; confining space; Ex. sheep pen; V: confine in a pen; enclose
penance
self-imposed punishment for sin; Ex. do penance for one's sins; CF. penitent
penchant
strong inclination; strong liking (esp. for something that is disapproved of by other people); Ex. penchant for fast cars
pendant(pendent)
hanging down from something; pending; N: ornament (hanging from a necklace etc.)
pending
not yet decided or settled; impending; Ex. pending decision; PREP. while awaiting; until; Ex. delay the decision pending his return
pendulous
hanging; suspended
penetrate
enter into; pierce; permeate; see through; grasp the inner significance of; understand
penitent
repentant; N.
penology
study of prison management and criminal rehabilitation
pensive
dreamily or deeply thoughtful; sadly thoughtful; thoughtful with a hint of sadness; contemplative; CF. think over
penumbra
partial shadow (in an eclipse); CF. almost shadow
penury
extreme poverty; stinginess; ADJ. penurious: very poor; stingy
peon
landless agricultural worker; bond servant; menial worker; N. peonage
perceptive
insightful; showing a good ability at perceiving and understanding; aware; wise; of perception
percussion
striking one object against another sharply; Ex. percussion instrument; N: striking together of two bodies; sound caused by percussion
perdition
damnation; complete ruin; hell
peregrination
journey; V. peregrinate
peremptory
demanding and leaving no choice; imperative; Ex. peremptory decree/knock
perennial
something long-lasting; perennial plant; ADJ: lasting through the year or many years; lasting for a long time; enduring
perfidious
treacherous; disloyal; N. perfidy: treachery
perforate
pierce; put a hole through
perfunctory
done routinely and with little care; superficial; not thorough; lacking interest, care, or enthusiasm; Ex. perfunctory kiss
perigee
point of moon's orbit when it is nearest the earth; CF. apogee
perimeter
outer boundary; length of the outer boundary; circumference
peripatetic
walking about from place to place (to work); moving; Ex. peripatetic school of philosophy
peripheral
of a periphery; marginal; outer; of minor importance; not central; Ex. peripheral nerve/interest
periphery
outside edge especially of a round surface; perimeter; Ex. periphery of the town
perjury
false testimony while under oath; V. perjure oneself: testify falsely under oath
permeable
that can be permeated; penetrable; porous; allowing liquids or gas to pass through; V. permeate: spread or flow throughout; charge
permissive
allowing much freedom; lenient; Ex. permissive society
pernicious
very harmful; deadly; very destructive; Ex. pernicious effect/anemia
peroration
conclusion of an oration; perorating; V. perorate: conclude a speech; speak at great length
perpetrate
commit an offense; do (something wrong)
perpetual
everlasting
perpetuate
make perpetual; make something last for a long time; preserve from extinction; N. perpetuity
perquisite(perk)
any gain above stipulated salary; Ex. perquisites such as free meals and a car
persevere
continue steadily in spite of difficulties
persist
continue in existence; last; continue in a course of action in spite of opposition; Ex. persist in/with something; ADJ. persistent
personable
attractive (in personality or appearance)
personify
represent (an inanimate object) as a person; be the embodiment or perfect example of; Ex. She is evil/patience personified; N. personification
perspicacious
(of someone) having insight; penetrating; astute
perspicuity
clearness of expression; freedom from ambiguity
perspicuous
(of something) plainly expressed; easy to understand; Ex. perspicuous comments
pert
(esp. of a girl or young woman) impertinent; forward; trim; jaunty; Ex. pert young miss/hat
pertinacious
holding tenaciously to an action; stubborn; persistent
pertinent
suitable; to the point; relevant
perturb
disturb greatly
peruse
read through with care; N. perusal
pervasive
spread throughout; V. pervade: (of smells, ideas, feelings) spread throughout; charge; permeate
perverse
purposely continuing to do something wrong; stubbornly wrongheaded; perverted; directed away from what is right; wicked and unacceptable; Ex. perverse satisfaction; Ex. Hannibal Lecter in a perverse mood; N. perversity
perversion
corruption; turning from right to wrong
pervert
corrupt; turn from right to wrong; misuse; Ex. perverted sexual desire/scientific knowledge; N: person whose sexual behavior is not natural
pessimism
belief that life is basically bad or evil; gloominess; tendency to take the gloomiest possible view of a situation; ADJ. pessimistic
pestilential(pestilent)
causing plague; tending to cause death; baneful; N. pestilence: fatal epidemic disease (esp. bubonic plague)
pestle
tool for mashing or grinding substances in a hard bowl or mortar
petrify
turn to stone; cause to become stonelike; stun or paralyze
petty
trivial; unimportant; very small; small-minded; petty-minded
petulant
touchy; peevish; ill-tempered
phalanx
formation of infantry carrying overlapping shields and long spears; group of men packed together (for attack or defense)
pharisaical
pertaining to the Pharisees, who paid scrupulous attention to tradition; self-righteous; hypocritical
pharisee
Pharisee: member of an ancient Jewish group that emphasized strict observance of the Mosaic law (considering themselves very holy); hypocritical self-righteous person
phenomena
observable facts; subjects of scientific investigation; SG. phenomenon: observable fact; very unusual person, thing, or event; marvel; wonder; CF. phenomenons; ADJ. phenomenal: very unusual; extraordinary; of a phenomenon; Ex. phenomenal strength
philanderer
faithless lover; flirt
philanthropist
lover of mankind; doer of good; N. philanthropy
philatelist
stamp-collector; N. philately: stamp collecting
Philistine
narrow-minded person, uncultured and exclusively interested in material gain; uncultured person who is indifferent to artistic and cultural values; member of an ancient people in Palestine; OP. aesthete
philology
study of language or words
phlegmatic
calm and unexcitable; not easily disturbed; CF. phlegm: sticky mucus produced in the respiratory tract
phobia
morbid fear
phoenix
symbol of immortality or rebirth; Ex. phoenix rising from its ashes
phylum
major classification, second to kingdom, of plants and animals; category ranking below a kingdom and above a class; division
physiognomy
face (as showing the character and the mind); art of judging human character from facial features
physiological
pertaining to the science of the function of living organisms; N. physiology
piebald
of different colors; mottled; spotted in different colors (esp. in black and white); Ex. piebald horse; CF. pie+bald
piecemeal
one part at a time; gradually; in stages; Ex. read a novel piecemeal
pied
piebald; variegated(many-colored); multicolored
piety
devoutness; reverence for God; ADJ. pious
pigment
coloring matter (usually powder to be mixed with water or oil)
pilfer
steal things of small value; filch; snitch
pillage
plunder
pillory
punish by placing in a wooden frame or pillory; subject or expose to criticism and ridicule; N.
pinch
squeeze between the thumb and a finger, or other edges; Ex. I had to pinch myself to make sure I wasn't dreaming. N: amount that can be held between the thumb and a finger
pine
long for; yearn; languish from longing or grief; decline
pinion
restrain or immobilize by binding the wings or legs; N: bird's wing
pinnace
small boat
pinnacle
peak; highest point; acme; Ex. pinnacle of fame
pious
devout; religious; N. piety
piquant
pleasantly tart-tasting; spicy; pleasantly stimulating; Ex. piquant situation when my old enemy asked for my help
pique
irritation; resentment from wounded pride (eg. loss in a contest); V: provoke; arouse; annoy; cause to feel resentment; Ex. pique her curiosity
piscatorial
pertaining to fishing; CF. Pisces
pitfall
hidden danger; concealed trap
pith
core or marrow; spongelike substance in the center of stems; essence; substance
pithy
concise and meaningful; substantial; meaty
pittance
small amount (of money); small allowance or wage
pivotal
of a pivot; central; critical; crucial
placate
pacify; bring peace to; conciliate; appease
placebo
harmless substance prescribed as a dummy pill
placid
peaceful; calm; Ex. placid child/lake
plagiarize
steal another's ideas or writings and pass them off as one's own; Ex. ideas plagiarized from my article; N. plagiarism; CF. kidnap
plaintive
expressing sorrow; mournful; Ex. plaintive song
plait
braid; interwine; interweave strands or lengths of; make by weaving strands together; Ex. plaited hair; N: braided length as of hair o fabric; CF. pigtail, ponytail
plane
carpenter's tool for smoothing and leveling wood; V. CF. flat
plaster
paste that hardens to a smooth solid and is used for coating walls; V.
plasticity
ability to be molded; ADJ. plastic: capable of being shaped or molded; Ex. plastic material such as clay
platitude
trite remark; commonplace statement; ADJ. platitudinous
platonic
purely spiritual; theoretical; without sensual desire
plaudit
praise; enthusiastic approval; round(succession or series) of applause; ADJ. plauditory; CF. applaud
plausible
conceivably true; having a show of truth but open to doubt; specious
plebeian
common; vulgar; pertaining to the common people; N: common people in ancient Rome; CF. patrician
plebiscite
direct vote by the entire electorate (on an important issue)
plenary
(of power) complete; full; fully attended by all qualified members; Ex. plenary power
plenitude
abundance; plenty; great amount; completeness; fullness; CF. plenary, plenty
plethora
excess; overabundance; Ex. a plethora of excuses
pliable
flexible; easily influenced; yielding; adaptable
pliant
flexible; easily influenced
plight
difficult condition; condition or state (esp. a bad state or condition); predicament
ploy
strategem to gain an advantage; tactic; Ex. management ploy
pluck
courage; V: pull off or out; pull out the hair or feathers of; ADJ. plucky: courageous; brave
plumage
feathers of a bird;
plumb
exactly vertical; N: weight on the end of a line; V: examine very carefully or critically in order to understand; measure depth (by sounding); Ex. plumb the depth of
plumber
one who installs and repairs pipes and plumbing(pipes)
plume
feather, esp. large or showy one; something that rises into the air (like the shape of a feather); Ex. plume of smoke: ?»??‡ ?¤‡???
plummet
fall sharply; fall straight down; Ex. Stock prices plummeted.
plump
pleasantly fat; nicely rounded
plutocracy
society ruled by the wealthy
podiatrist
doctor who treats ailments of the feet; chiropodist; N. podiatrics
podium
pedestal; raised platform
poignancy
quality of being deeply moving; keenness of emotion; ADJ. poignant: touching; deeply moving; (of sorrow, grief, etc.) painful; keenly distressing to the mind; Ex. poignant memory/anxiety; CF. prick
poise
good judgment with composure; balance; V: place in a carefully balanced position
polar
of a pole; characterized by opposite extremes; Ex. polar opposites
polarity
state of having two opposite qualities
polarize
split into opposite extremes or camps
polemic
attack or defense of an opinion; controversy or refutation; argument in support of point of view; N. polemics: art of debate or controversy
polemical(polemic)
aggressive in verbal attack; disputatious (rather than simply expressing opinions)
politic
prudent; judicious; well judged; expedient; well devised
polity
(particular form of) political organization; form of government of nation or state; Ex. student polity
polygamist
one who has more than one spouse at a time; CF. bigamy; CF. polyandry
polyglot
speaking several languages; multilingual; Ex. polyglot person/society; N.
pomposity
self-important behavior; acting like a stuffed shirt(pompous person); ADJ. pompous: self-important
ponderous
having great weight; weighty; unwieldy; lacking lightness; dull; Ex. ponderous body/style of writing
pontifical
pertaining to a bishop or pope; pompous or pretentious; CF. pontiff: pope; bishop
pore
study industriously; ponder; scrutinize; Ex. pore over the book; N.
porous
full of pores; like a sieve
porridge
soft food made by boiling oatmeal
portend
foretell; presage; be a sign or warning of; N. portent: sign; omen; forewarning
portly
stout; corpulent
pose
assume a particular posture; put forward; present; affect a particular attitude (to impress others); Ex. pose a threat; N.
poseur
person who pretends to be sophisticated, elegant, etc., to impress others; person who poses; CF. pose
posterity
descendants; future generations; Ex. go down to posterity; CF. posterior, anterior
posthumous
after death (as of child born after father's death or book published after author's death); coming or occurring after one's death; Ex. posthumous fame/novel
postmortem
autopsy; ADJ: occurring after death; of a postmortem
postulate
self-evident truth; something assumed without proof; V: assume the truth of (as a basis of an argument)
posture
assume an affected pose; act artificially; N: pose; attitude
potable
suitable for drinking; drinkable
potent
powerful; convincing; persuasive; greatly influential
potentate
monarch; sovereign
potential
expressing possibility; latent; N: capacity for growth
potion
dose (of liquids); liquid dose
potpourri
heterogeneous mixture; medley; mixture of dried flower petals a pot (to give a pleasant smell to a room)
poultice
soothing application applied to sore and inflamed portions of the body
pr\'ecis
abstract; concise summing up of main points; concise summary of a text
practicable
feasible
practical
based on experience; of or acquired through practice (rather than theory); useful; Ex. practical man
pragmatic
practical (as opposed to idealistic); concerned with practical worth or impact of something; Ex. pragmatic test of the skill
pragmatist
practical person; N. pragmatism: pragmatic way of dealing with things
prance
move about in a spirited manner (proudly and confidently)
prank
mischievous trick
prate
talk idly; speak foolishly; boast idly
prattle
talk idly; babble; N. CF. prate
preamble
introductory statement
precarious
unsafe; lacking in stability; uncertain; risky; Ex. precarious living
precedent
preceding (in time, rank, etc.)
precept
practical rule guiding conduct; Ex. mother's precept
precinct
division of a city for election or police purposes; precincts: space that surrounds a building; Ex. precincts of the college
precipice
cliff; dangerous position; Ex. on the edge of the precipice
precipitant
something that causes a substance in a chemical solution to separate out in solid form; OP. solvent
precipitate
hurl downward; throw headlong; hasten; cause to happen sooner; condense and fall as rain or snow; cause (a solid substance) to be separated from a solution; ADJ. hasty; rash; premature; sudden
precipitous
steep; overhasty; precipitate
precise
exact
preclude
make impossible; prevent; exclude; eliminate
precocious
advanced in development; N. precocity
precursor
forerunner; predecessor
predator
predatory animal or bird; predatory person; creature that seizes and devours another animal; person who robs or exploits others; ADJ. predatory: living by preying on other organisms; plundering; N. predation
predecessor
former occupant of a post
predetermine
determine in advance; predestine; settle or decide beforehand; influence markedly
predicament
difficult situation; tricky or dangerous situation; dilemma
predilection
preference; partiality
predispose
give an inclination toward (in advance); make susceptible to; Ex. predispose people to certain cancer; N. predisposition
preeminent
outstanding; superior
preempt
prevent in advance; head off(forestall); forestall by acting first; appropriate for oneself before others; supplant; take the place of; displace; Ex. preempt any attempts; ADJ. preemptive
preen
make oneself tidy in appearance; feel self-satisfaction or pride; (of a bird) smooth or clean (feathers) with the beak; Ex. preen oneself on; CF. prune
prefatory
introductory; of a preface
prefigure
be a sign of; foreshadow
prehensile
capable of grasping or holding (esp. by wrapping around); Ex. prehensile tails
prelate
church dignitary; priest of high position in the church (esp. bishop)
prelude
introduction; introductory performance or event; forerunner
premeditate
plan in advance; Ex. premeditated murder
premise
assumption; postulate; proposition upon which an argument is based
premonition
forewarning; presentiment; foreboding
premonitory
serving to warn
preponderance
superiority of power, quantity, etc.; V. preponderate: be greater in power, weight, or importance; ADJ. preponderant
prepossessing
attractive; CF. preoccupying ?
preposterous
absurd; completely unreasonable; ridiculous
prerogative
privilege; unquestionable right; CF. ask before
presage
foretell; be a warning or sign of; N: presentiment; foreboding; omen
prescience
ability to foretell the future; knowledge of actions before they occur; ADJ. prescient
presentiment
premonition; foreboding; feeling something will happen; anticipatory fear
prestige
respect or admiration; impression produced by achievements or reputation; ADJ: causing admiration; ADJ. prestigious: having prestige
presume
take for granted; assume; act overconfidently; take liberties; presume on/upon: take unfair advantage of (someone's kindness or connection); N. presumption
presumptuous
going beyond what is right; excessively forward; arrogant; taking liberties
pretend
feign; pretend to: claim to possess; make pretensions to; Ex. I don't pretend to much expertise; N. pretense
pretension
pretentiousness; claim (without foundation); Ex. I make no pretensions to skill as an artist.
pretentious
ostentatious; showy; pompous; making unjustified claims; overambitious; Ex. pretentious films that claim to be art
preternatural
beyond what is normal in nature; supernatural; Ex. preternatural strength/forces
pretext
excuse
prevail
be widespread; triumph over; gain victory; prevail on: persuade; induce; Ex. Justice has prevailed; Ex. prevail on someone to do something
prevalent
widespread; generally accepted
prevaricate
lie; hide the truth (by equivocating)
prey
target of a hunt; victim; V: hunt and eat as prey; victimize; Ex. Cats prey on mice.
prim
proper to the point of affectation; very precise and formal; exceedingly proper
primal
first in rank or importance; being first in time; original; Ex. man's primal innocence
primary
first in rank or importance; principal; earliest in time; Ex. primary stages; N. CF. first
primate
group of mammals including humans
prime
period of ideal or peak condition; earliest or beginning stage; Ex. in the prime of life; Ex. prime of the year(spring); ADJ: first in importance or rank; first; V: make ready; prepare
primogeniture
seniority by birth; state of being the first-born child; right of the eldest child (to inherit the entire property of one or both parents)
primordial
existing at the beginning (of time); rudimentary
primp
groom oneself with care; adorn oneself
pristine
unspoiled; remaining in a pure state; characteristic of earlier times; primitive; Ex. an old book in pristine condition
privation
lack of the basic necessities or comforts of life; hardship; want; CF. deprive
privy
secret; hidden; not public; made a participant in something secret; Ex. privy chamber government; Ex. be privy to a discussion; CF. private
prize
pry; move with a lever; value highly; esteem; Ex. his most prized possession; N: something captured during war-time (esp. an enemy ship)
probe
explore with a probe or tools; investigate; N: slender instrument used to explore a wound or body cavity; device designed to investigate an unknown region; thorough investigation; Ex. space probe
probity
uprightness; honesty; incorruptibility
problematic
causing a problem; open to doubt; doubtful; unsettled; questionable; Ex. Whether the arena will ever be completed is problematic.
proclivity
inclination; natural tendency (esp. towards something bad)
procrastinate
postpone; delay or put off
procurement
obtaining; V. procure: obtain by effort; obtain (a prostitute) for another
prod
poke (with a pointed object); stir up; urge; goad to action; N: pointed object used to prod; prodding
prodigal
wasteful; reckless with money; profuse; Ex. a mind prodigal of ideas; N. prodigality
prodigious
enormous; marvelous; extraordinary; Ex. prodigious amount/memory
prodigy
highly gifted child; person with exceptional talents; marvel; wonder
profane
violate; desecrate (something holy); treat unworthily; be profane for; ADJ: secular; nonreligious; irreverent for holy things
profligate
wasteful (of money); dissipated; wildly immoral; dissolute; N: profligate person; N. profligacy
profound
deep; not superficial; complete; Ex. profound thinker/remark/silence/deafness; N. profundity
profusion
great amount; plenty; overabundance; excess; lavish expenditure; Ex. profusion of choices; ADJ. profuse: plentiful; copious; giving or given abundantly; extravagant
progenitor
ancestor
progeny
children; offspring; descendants
prognosis
forecasted course of a disease; prediction; CF. prognostic
prognosticate
predict (according to present indications)
prohibitive
so high as to prohibit purchase or use; tending to prevent the purchase or use of something; prohibiting; inclined to prevent or forbid; Ex. prohibitive tax
projectile
missile; fired or thrown object (such as stone or bullet)
proletarian
member of the working class; blue collar guy; N. proletariat: working class (who have to work for wages)
proliferate
grow rapidly (in numbers); spread; multiply; N. proliferation
prolific
producing offspring or fruit in abundance; fertile; fecund; abundantly fruitful; producing abundant works; Ex. prolific writer
prolixity
tedious wordiness; verbosity; ADJ. prolix: wordy; verbose; diffuse
prologue
introduction (to a poem or play)
prolong
lengthen; extend; draw out
prominent
protruding(sticking out); conspicuous; notable; eminent
promiscuous
mixed indiscriminately; indiscriminate; not choosing carefully; indiscriminate in the choice of sexual partners; irregular, particularly sexually; Ex. promiscuous life/girl; N. promiscuity
promontory
headland
promote
advance in rank; advance; help to flourish; advocate; help actively in forming; publicize or popularize; Ex. Milk promotes health; Ex. promote a match/bill; Ex. promote a new product
prompt
cause; urge; provoke; provide a cue (for an actor); ADJ: done without delay; done at the right time; punctual; on time; N: reminder or cue
promulgate
announce; proclaim a doctrine or law; make known by official publication
prone
inclined to; likely to (suffer); prostrate; lying with the front downward; Ex. prone to disease/make mistakes; Ex. accident-prone
prong
pointed projecting part
pronounced
distinct; very noticeable; Ex. pronounced limp
prop
support placed under or against something; V.
propagate
increase in number by producing young; multiply; spread; Ex. Most plants propagate by seed; Ex. newspaper propagating their ideas
propellant(propellent)
substance which propels or drives forward (such as an explosive charge or a rocket fuel)
propensity
natural inclination
prophetic
of a prophet or prophecy; having to do with predicting the future; N. prophecy; V. prophesy; N. prophet
prophylactic
used to prevent disease; N: something prophylactic; condom; N. prophylaxis: prevention of disease
propinquity
nearness (in space or relationship); proximity; kinship
propitiate
appease; conciliate; make peaceful; ADJ. propitiatory
propitious
favorable; auspicious; advantageous; fortunate; Ex. propitious day/sign
proponent
supporter; backer; opposite of opponent
propound
put forth for consideration or analysis; set forth; Ex. propound a problem/theory
propriety
fitness; quality of being proper; correct conduct; conformity to prevailing customs and usages; CF. proprietor, proprietary
propulsive
driving forward; N. propulsion
prosaic
lacking in imagination; dull and unimaginative; matter-of-fact(concerned with facts, not imagination or feelings); factual; CF. prose
proscenium
part of stage in front of curtain; front arch of a stage
proscribe
prohibit; ostracize; banish; outlaw
proselytize
(induce someone to) convert to a religion or belief; N. proselyte: new convert to a doctrine or religion
prosody
art of versification; study of the metrical structure of verse
prosper
become successful (esp. financially); thrive; grow well; Ex. children prospering under his care
prosperity
good fortune and financial success; physical well-being
prosperous
successful; rich; affluent; well-to-do; well-off
prostrate
stretch out full on ground; make prostrate; enervate; Ex. prostrating illness; ADJ: lying face down; having lost all strength
prot\'eg\'e
person receiving protection and support from a patron
protagonist
leader or noticeable supporter of an idea; chief character in a play or story
protean
able to take on many forms; versatile; CF. Proteus: sea god to change his shape at will
protocol
diplomatic etiquette; ceremony and etiquette observed by diplomats; first copy of a treaty before its ratification; Ex. Protocol demands that the queen meet him at the airport.
prototype
original work used as a model by others
protract
prolong; lengthen in time; draw out
protrude
stick out; jut; project; Ex. protruding teeth
protuberance
protrusion; swelling; bulge
provenance
place of origin; origin or source of something; Ex. Gunpowder is of Chinese provenance; CF. come
provender
dry food for livestock; fodder
proverb
adage; someone or something well known for notoriety; ADJ. proverbial: of a proverb; widely known; ADV. proverbially
providence
quality of being provident; divine care; god's care; Providence: god; Ex. It seemed like providence that the doctor happened to be there; ADJ. providential: of divine providence; fortunate
provident
providing for future needs; displaying foresight; thrifty; preparing for emergencies; OP. improvident
provincial
pertaining to a province; limited in outlook; narrow; unsophisticated
provision
act of providing; something provided; preparatory measure; provisions: necessary supplies (esp. food); stipulation; condition in an agreement; Ex. According to the provisions of the agreement
provisional
tentative; temporary
proviso
stipulation; condition in an agreement; provision
provocative
arousing anger or sexual interest; annoying; Ex. provocative in tight jeans; V. provoke: incite to anger; cause (an unpleasant action or feeling); N. provocation
prowess
extraordinary ability; military bravery; Ex. prowess in battle
proximity
nearness; ADJ. proximate
proxy
authorized agent; authority to act for another
prude
excessively modest or proper person (who is easily shocked by improper things, esp. of a sexual nature); N. prudery; ADJ. prudish: excessively concerned with propriety
prudent
cautious; careful; prudential
prune
cut away; trim
prurient
having or causing lustful desires and thoughts; arousing immoderate sexual desire
pry
inquire impertinently (someone else's private affairs); use leverage to raise or open something; prize; N. pries: tool for prying
pseudonym
pen name; fictitious name assumed by an author; ADJ. pseudonymous
psyche
soul; mind
psychiatrist
doctor who treats mental diseases
psychic
of psyche; mental; of or possessing extraordinary mental powers
psychopathic
pertaining to mental dearrangement; N. psychopath: person with an antisocial personality disorder
psychosis
mental disorder; ADJ. N. psychotic
psychosomatic
of the influence of the mind on the body (esp. with respect to disease)
pterodactyl
extinct flying reptile; CF. wing+finger
pucker
gather into wrinkles or folds; N: wrinkle or fold
pudding
hot sweet dish
puerile
childish; immature; CF. puer: boy
pugilist
boxer; CF. pugilism: boxing
pugnacity
combativeness; disposition to fight; ADJ. pugnacious: (of people) belligerent; combative in nature
puissant
powerful; strong; potent; N. puissance: power
pulchritude
beauty; comeliness; ADJ. pulchritudinous
pulmonary
pertaining to the lungs
pulpit
raised platform used in preaching (in a church)
pulsate
throb; beat regularly; vibrate regularly
pulse
rhythmical throbbing of arteries; brief sudden change in a normally constant quantity; V: pulsate
pulverize
crush or grind into very small particles
pummel
pommel; beat or pound with fists
punctilious
minutely attentive (perhaps too much so) to fine points; stressing niceties of conduct or form; N. punctilio, punctiliousness: careful attention payed to every small exact detail
pundit
authority on a subject; expert; learned person
pungent
stinging; acrid; sharp in taste or smell; (of speech or writing) caustic; N. pungency
punitive
punishing; Ex. punitive measures
puny
tiny; weak; insignificant
purchase
secure grasp or hold; firm grasp or footing
purgatory
place of spiritual expiation; temporary state or place in which the souls must expiate their sins
purge
remove or get rid of something or someone unwanted; eliminate; free from blame or guilt; cleanse or purify (esp. of sin, guilt, or defilement); N.
purport
intention; purpose; meaning; V: claim; profess; Ex. order which purports to be signed by the general
purported
alleged; claimed; reputed or rumored; Ex. purported Satanists
purse
pucker; contract (lips) into wrinkles; N: wallet
purveyor
furnisher of foodstuffs; caterer; V. purvey: supply (eg. food); furnish; CF. provide
pushy
disagreeably aggressive
pusillanimous
cowardly; lacking courage; fainthearted
putative
supposed; reputed; generally regarded as such; Ex. putative father of the child
putrefy
make or become putrid; N. putrefaction
putrescent
becoming putrid; putrefying
putrid
decayed and foul-smelling; foul; rotten; decayed; N. putridity
puzzle
baffle or confuse by a difficult problem; ponder over a problem in an effort to solve; clarify or solve by reasoning; Ex. puzzle out the answer; N.
pyromaniac
person with an insane desire to set things on fire